4. <botany> Pertaining to a subordinate portion; as, a compound umbel is made up of a several partial umbels; a leaflet is often supported by a partial petiole. Partial differentials, Partial differential coefficients, Partial differentiation, etc. (of a function of two or more variables), the differentials, differential coefficients, differentiation etc, of the function, upon the hypothesis that some of the variables are for the time constant.
<mathematics> Partial fractions, the simple tones which in combination form an ordinary tone; the overtones, or harmonics, which, blending with a fundamental tone, cause its special quality of sound, or timbre, or tone colour. See, also, Tone.
Origin: F, fr. LL. Partials, fr. L. Pars, gen. Partis, a part; cf. (for sense 1) F. Partiel. See Part.
(01 Mar 1998)
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